SŽebastien Buemi, Nissan EDams, Formula E, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, 2019

Buemi on pole in Berlin as Lotterer slips up

Formula E

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Sebastien Buemi will start the Berlin EPrix from pole position alongside Stoffel Vandoorne.

However championship contender Andre Lotterer fell at the first hurdle.

Formula E has an adjusted format in Berlin, in order to accommodate the German football cup final, where unusually we saw practice take place on Friday and qualifying and the race much earlier on Saturday. Qualifying started first thing, with the first two groups going out before 9am on a track cleaned the previous night and not run on at all previously today.

Group One: Robin Frijns, Lucas di Grassi, Jean-Eric Vergne, Antonio Felix da Costa, Andre Lotterer

Despite the alleged disadvantage of running in Group One on the gripless concrete in Tempelhof, Lucas di Grassi was able to put in a competitive time of 1’07.926 – within a few tenths of the best times from much warmer and later FP2 yesterday.

But the main upset of the first session befell Andre Lotterer. Waiting until the last second for the surface to improve, he was not sent out in time to start his hot lap before the chequered flag. With only an out-lap time of 1’12.568 he would be comfortably last on the grid.

He will gain a place from Robin Frijns, who faces a five-place grid penalty for a collision in Monaco.

Qualifying 1

PositionDriverTeamTime
1Lucas di GrassiAudi1’07.926
2Antonio Felix da CostaBMWi Andretti1’08.013
3Jean-Eric VergneDS Techeetah1’08.046
4Robin FrijnsEnvision Virgin1’08.919
5Andre LottererDS Techeetah1’12.568

Group Two: Sam Bird, Mitch Evans, Oliver Rowland, Jerome D’Ambrosio, Daniel Abt

Oliver Rowland, the only man to claim two pole positions this season, was the first driver in this group to go to full power – but was unable to get close to Di Grassi’s time on a 1’08.119.

Most drivers were unable to rival group one’s times but Jerome D’Ambrosio was able to put himself into Super Pole contention and last year’s race winner Daniel Abt became the second driver to dip below 1’08, slotting in behind teammate Di Grassi at the top of the times.

Qualifying 2

PositionDriverTeamTime
1Daniel AbtAudi1’07.953
2Jerome D’AmbrosioMahindra1’08.065
3Oliver RowlandNissan e.Dams1’08.119
4Sam BirdEnvision Virgin1’08.182
5Mitch EvansPanasonic Jaguar1’08.314

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Group Three: Stoffel Vandoorne, Felipe Massa, Sebastien Buemi, Alexander Sims, Edoardo Mortara, Pascal Wehrlein

Alexander Sims had performed well in the practice sessions yesterday, amidst a fairly torrid and accident-strewn season, and was able to go out first and immediately set a 1’07.728 – putting him in easily into provisional super pole and on top of the times.

Group three were considerably quicker than Group Two, however, with Buemi and Vandoorne putting in even faster times to see the three lead the results – and push current championship leader Jean-Eric Vergne out of Super Pole contention.

During the session, it was announced that Daniel Abt was under investigation for activating his high-power 250kW mode too early.

Qualifying 3

PositionDriverTeamTime
1Stoffel VandoorneHWA AG1’07.619
2Sebastien BuemiNissan e.Dams1’07.625
3Alexander SimsBMWi Andretti1’07.728
4Pascal WehrleinMahindra1’08.086
5Edoardo MortaraVenturi1’08.314
6Felipe MassaVenturi1’08.348

Group Four: Alexander Lynn, Maximilian Guenther, Jose Maria Lopez, Tom Dillman, Oliver Turvey, Gary Paffett

Alexander Lynn and Maximilian Guenther looked to be on very strong laps – with Lynn, who replaced Nelson Piquet Jr mid-season, putting in a good enough time to make his first Super Pole appearance of the season.

Guenther was unable to make good on his pace, left in 15th after a late error but Gary Paffett put in the top time of the session, bringing both cars from rookie home team HWA AG into Super Pole.

Qualifying 4

PositionDriverTeamTime
1Gary PaffettHWA AG1’07.877
2Alexander LynnPanasonic Jaguar1’07.920
3Oliver TurveyNIO1’08.203
4Maximilian GuentherGEOX Dragon1’08.218
5Tom DillmanNIO1’08.263
6Jose-Maria LopezGEOX Dragon1’08.720

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Super Pole: Lucas di Grassi, Alexander Sims, Sebastien Buemi, Stoffel Vandoorne, Alexander Lynn, Gary Paffett

As the slowest qualifier to Super Pole, Di Grassi was first out to put in a 1.07.719 which Alex Lynn and Gary Paffett were unable to improve on, although both close to the Audi’s time.

Alexander Sims, who faces a five-place grid penalty here, made a small error that saw him at the back of the Super Pole times.

Sebastien Buemi, whose last win in Formula E was here during Season 3, put in an extremely fast lap to take provisional pole by four tenths on a 1’07.295. Vandoorne was able to beat Di Grassi’s time for the second front row spot.

Buemi’s pole position is his second of the season, after his inherited pole in Santiago following Di Grassi’s disqualification.

Super Pole

PositionDriverTeamTime
1Sebastien BuemiNissan e.Dams1’07.295
2Stoffel VandoorneHWA AG1’07.693
3Lucas di GrassiAudi1’07.719
4Gary PaffettHWA AG1’07.783
5Alexander LynnPanasonic Jaguar1’07.849
6Alexander SimsBWMi Andretti1’08.017

Provisional qualifying results

PositionDriverTeamTime
1Sebastien BuemiNissan e.Dams1’07.295
2Stoffel VandoorneHWA AG1’07.693
3Lucas di GrassiAudi1’07.719
4Gary PaffettHWA AG1’07.783
5Alexander LynnPanasonic Jaguar1’07.849
6Alexander SimsBWMi Andretti1’08.017
7Daniel AbtAudi1’07.953
8Antonio Felix da CostaBWMi Andretti1’08.013
9Jean-Eric VergneDS Techeetah1’08.046
10Jerome D’AmbrosioMahindra1’08.065
11Pascal WehrleinMahindra1’08.086
12Oliver RowlandNissan e.Dams1’08.119
13Sam BirdEnvision Virgin1’08.182
14Oliver TurveyNIO1’08.203
15Maximilian GuentherGEOX Dragon1’08.218
16Edoardo MortaraVenturi1’08.223
17Tom DillmanNIO1’08.263
18Mitch EvansPanasonic Jaguar1’08.314
19Felipe MassaVenturi1’08.348
20Jose Maria LopezGEOX Dragon1’08.720
21Robin FrijnsEnvision Virgin1’08.919
22Andre LottererDS Techeetah1’12.568

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Author information

Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a freelance journalist who roams the paddocks of Formula E, covering the technical and emotional elements of electric racing. Usually found at...

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  • 4 comments on “Buemi on pole in Berlin as Lotterer slips up”

    1. Absolutely dislike the qualifying format used for F-E.

    2. I have sympathy for Andre Lotterer. Its like Monaco all over again. Once again, the team’s obsession with track evolution costs dearly rather than, just getting your head down and setting a lap.

      1. * Sorry that should have read “no sympathy”!

    3. Really nice effort from Vandoorne!

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